by: Matthew Robeson [ ]
Inside of the standard sized Legend Productions box, you're greeted with a package that is absolutely stuffed with parts. The first thing you'll see if the massive Turret Stowage Box. The part is beautifully detailed on all sides, but is attached to a huge casting block. That will certainly require busting out the power tools to deal with removal. After removal though, it should be a drop-fit onto the kit, quickly replacing the kit's open version.
There are six resin pieces cast in Legend Productions's normal medium gray resin, and all are attached to pretty stout casting blocks. It is obviously necessary given the size of the parts, but it can create some headaches in removal. Just remember to wear a dust mask to make sure you don't get the resin dust into your lungs.
The kit gives you parts for the turret stowage box, and the two stowage boxes on the back of the hull, flanking the access door. All of the parts have great detail, and come with photo-etch parts to set off the detail.
The second part of this set is the famous ball-and-chain armor around the turret stowage box. Legend Productions provides two options in this kit, with either photo-etch chain, or a length of metal chain included based on preference. The photo-etch parts are provided on strips that attach to the bottom of the basket, and are already perfectly spaced and the right length. This is the easier of the two options included for sure, although the photo-etch strips do look flat. Also included is a long length of lamp chain for the ball portion of the armor. It looks like you can just cut each ball off the chain, and then attach it to the chain to truly look realistic. This is good if you don't want to use the plastic provided in the kit, and want something more in-scale. I think the metal chain option is the best for scale fidelity, but it is more fiddly than just attaching the photo-etch strips.
The only problem with this set is potential redundancy. Legend Productions also produces a Merkava IID Detail Set, which does include these parts in it. So if you buy that detail set, you do not need to purchase this set as well, unless you want two copies of the parts just in case. If you don't want to go for the full detail set though, this is a great detail set to make your Merkava look better than the box kit.